Crime Support Department Protecting Communities from Serious by sdfsb346f


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                                              Performance and Operations Committee
                                                                   15 October 2009

                          Crime Support Department
                         Protecting Communities from
                          Serious Acquisitive Crime
                                Update Report
                                  Report of the Chief Constable

1. To update the Police Authority regarding the Serious Acquisitive Crime Toolkit.

     The effectiveness of crime prevention/reduction methods in preventing volume property
     crime has been well reported over the past three decades – and repeatedly confirmed by
     independent academic assessments. West Midlands Police (and its partner agencies)
     possess some of the best evidenced examples of long term; sustainable crime
     prevention/reduction in the United Kingdom, an example of this is The Four Towers at
     Duddeston Manor in Nechells with a 98.7% reduction in domestic burglary now
     maintained for 19 years.

3.   However, Serious Acquisitive Crime has unsurprisingly proven to be far more resilient to
     the traditional approach to crime prevention. Unlike ‘opportunist’ volume property crime,
     Serious Acquisitive Crime is most often committed by highly motivated offenders with a
     previous crime history. Indeed, such offenders are often described as Career or
     Professional criminals who often choose to specialise in a particular crime type (once
     again this fact has been repeatedly evidenced by independent academic research).

      The Serious Acquisitive Crime Toolkit
4.    Two academics, Professors Cornish and Clarke have been working in the field of crime
      prevention since 1993. Their crime reduction toolkit now contains 25 techniques based in
      five categories.
     • Increase the effort
     • Increase the risks
     • Reduce the rewards
     • Reduce provocations
     • Remove excuses

5.   A copy of the 25 techniques is presented in Appendix A
     The Toolkit of interventions deliberately concentrates on reducing five different types of
     crime: robbery, burglary, vehicle crime, business crime and student crime. These
     interventions may be specific to one of these crime types, or cross-cutting in their
     application. Similarly, they are not necessarily exclusive to application by West Midlands
     Police and often require partnership working to be truly effective. Most importantly, they
     are not an exhaustive list and Professor Clarke testifies to how they will evolve and
     expand in number over time. Latest crime trends, modus operandi, intelligence and good
     practice will influence this evolution. As a result, the Serious Acquisitive Crime Toolkit is a
living document which has the capacity to be continually updated.

      The Serious Acquisitive Crime Strategy
6.    By utilising the Serious Acquisitive Crime Toolkit, West Midlands Police is in a
      stronger position to reduce these forms of crime. Moreover, the combination of
      Intelligence-led policing, partnership working (especially amongst the business
      community) and drawing down opportunities provided by the Drug Intervention
      Programme and other offender programmes, will continue to reduce the level of
      Serious Acquisitive Crime and total recorded crime.

      Implementation of the toolkit within West Midlands Police
7.    Delivery and implementation of the Serious Acquisitive Crime Toolkit within the
      West Midlands Police area will be achieved by way of its dissemination via:
      •    Operations Superintendents, Crime Managers and Intelligence Managers;
      •    Crime Reduction Officers and Community Partnership Officers on OCU/LPU;
      •    Crime Support website under the Performance and Investigation heading; and
      •    Communications & Reassurance Officers via the Press Office.

8.    The Crime Reduction Team, which sits under Crime Support will ensure that the
      necessary support is provided to the above. They will also be responsible for
      providing the initial reference material in relation to the toolkit.

9.    Certain forms of Serious Acquisitive Crime are known to adversely affect
      disproportionate number of people within one of the core diversity groups.
      Consequently, an intervention that reduces such vulnerability can be perceived as
      having a positive effect of diversity.

10.   The Crime reduction team is already embedded within Crime Support, and there are
      therefore no major financial implications in adopting the use of the toolkit.

11    Section 6 of the Police Act, 1996 requires the Police Authority to secure the
      maintenance of an efficient and effective police force for its area.

      Equalities Implications
12    This approach will enhance the service provided to the all areas of our community
      and enhance the management of Serious Acquisitive. Crime Support           officers
      and police staff will consider the six strands of diversity when undertaking their

13.   That the committee notes this report and the forces progress towards
      implementation the Crime Reduction Toolkit

Chris Sims
Chief Constable

CONTACT OFFICER                               BACKGROUND
Name: Mark Stokes                             DOCUMENTS
Title: Inspector – Crime Reduction            App A – The Crime Reduction
Tel:   0845 113 5000 Ext: 7630 6860           Toolkit


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